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Christopher Lee Thayer
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Christopher Thayer’s Answers

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  • Who can I hold responsible for my tree loss? I would like to sue for damages.

    My neighbor had called a gardener he had used on two other occasions. This time, the neighbor wanted the gardener to remove a couple of larger tees from his back yard to open up his view. The gardeners regular workers were on an other job so he u...

    Christopher’s Answer

    Your neighbor is responsible for the loss of the tree. Washington has a special statute for "timber trespass" which likely applies. This would allow you to sue your neighbor for damages. Whether or not you want to get involved in a lawsuit with your neighbor may be another question. Neighbor disputes can be challenging because even when/if you win, you still have to live next door. The animosity and bad feelings that are generated can linger for years. You might consider proposing to your neighbor to have them pay for a replacement tree. It won't be the same as a 30 year old oak, but maybe you can find something you can live with. If it is a real concern for you, you should seek out a real estate litigation attorney in your area.

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  • What kind of settlement should I ask for? Should I wait to find out if I need surgery to contact the insurance company again?

    I was in a car accident September 28th of 2015. My right hand hit my car dash. The insured's insurance company has been calling several times a week since the accident to try and settle. I told them to wait until I had a final answer of why my ...

    Christopher’s Answer

    You should definitely wait to see how the surgery goes, and how you recover. It is impossible to say how much your claim is worth based on the information provided. And, it is probably not wise to discuss that on an open internet forum regardless. Like others, I would recommend that you seek out at least a consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer. Typically, there is no fee for an initial consultation. Even if you decide not to hire a lawyer now (though you should definitely consider that), you should make sure you understand your rights before attempting any negotiations with the insurance company.

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  • How long should a personal injury settlement take? It has been 2 months since I sent a demand letter and no offer has been made.

    I was involved in an accident over a year ago. I was rear ended at a high speed. I sustained a whiplash injury that took over a year to finally heal. I was released by my doctor and began the personal injury claim process with the person's insuran...

    Christopher’s Answer

    Sorry to hear of your unfortunate experience, unfortunately, your experience is relatively common. I have two recommendations for you. First, send a letter to the insurer and give them a deadline (15 days, 30 days or whatever you choose). Tell them that if no response is received by that deadline you are hiring a lawyer and going to file suit, and that all prior settlement offers will be revoked. Second, you really should consider hiring a lawyer, maybe now and not later. Almost all personal injury cases are handled on a contingent fee, meaning you don't have to pay any money up front. I'd recommend you at least make a call and talk to a few in your area so that you better understand your rights. Best of luck to you.

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  • What can I do? Can this judgement be vacated somehow? Who is Machol and Joannes, LLC now collecting for?

    In 2004 I had a judgement entered in the legal system in the state of Washington for $1044 dollars for the collections agency arrow financial services which is being handled by Attorneys, Machol and Joannes, LLC. I just found out that Arrow Fi...

    Christopher’s Answer

    Judgments in WA are generally valid for 10 years (and then they expire) - unless they are renewed. If this judgment was not renewed, it sounds like it should be expired. If it was renewed, you need to make contact with the attorney for the plaintiff. It may be this debt was sold.

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  • I was involved in a Car accident as a passenger of the vehicle that was hit. Neither had insurance, What can I do?

    I was transported to E>R> and sent home stating there were no injuries or breaks. After a week, I returned to the E>R because I was in horrific pain. The ER doctor did a scan and discovered I had actually broken my sternum, and fractured ribs. I...

    Christopher’s Answer

    If you or the driver of the vehicle had auto insurance at the time there is likely coverage for your claim. I would recommend that you contact an experienced personal injury attorney in your area to go over your options.

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  • Bruising with auto accident

    She is 100% at fault. She pulled u turn from a through lane and I was in the turn lane to go left. I have major bruising on my shoulder and hip from the seat belt. I also have severe whiplash and pulled muscles in my upper back and right shoulder,...

    Christopher’s Answer

    Sorry to hear about your situation. It is impossible to tell how much your claim is worth based on the information provided; and it would not be wise to discuss that information on an open public forum such as this. I would recommend you meet with an experienced personal injury in your area to discuss this in person. Most personal injury attorney, including myself, offer free initial consultations and case evaluations. In terms of the value of a case, a lot of factors come into play. This includes, the nature of the diagnoses, the severity and duration of any symptoms, how well documented the injuries are in the medical records, the role of any pre-existing medical conditions, whether or not there are any liability defenses, and the degree of any permanency of any conditions. This is not an exhaustive list. Although your case can be compared to others, and it is possible to at least estimate your claim value (once you complete treatment), all cases are unique.

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  • There is no mention of reimbursing me for out of pocket expenses in a settlement letter I received. Will I be reimbursed?

    I received a letter from an insurance co titled "Full Release of All Claims With Indemnity Medical Expenses Incurred and not Yet Paid". In the letter they are offering to pay a settlement for pain and suffering, however there is no mention of get...

    Christopher’s Answer

    Typically when settling a personal injury claim, you will just get paid a lump sum - which is intended to compensate you for all your damages (including any out of pocket expenses you may have incurred and presented). There are circumstances where specific items of damages are specified for various reasons (including the L&I context). If you feel that the settlement offer is not fair, you really should consider consulting with an experienced personal injury attorney in your area. Most offer free initial consultations and case evaluations, which could help you decide whether you should consider actually retaining an attorney.

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  • Easement driveway on our property.

    We have a home with our own driveway but there is a easement driveway that goes to our neighbors home. The easement is included in our property description . The property line goes across the driveway about 1/2 way to our neighbors home. It start...

    Christopher’s Answer

    The maintenance obligations should be defined by the agreement or document that created the easement. This document should have been included as an exhibit to the title policy you received when you purchased your home. If you don't have that anymore, you can either check with your county auditor (I think this is the link http://gis.clark.wa.gov/gishome/auditor/) or you may be able to just call a local title company and ask them to find the easement documentation. After reviewing the documentation, if you still have questions, you might want to go see a local real estate lawyer to review your rights and options.

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  • What kind of legal arrangements need to be made in order for 2 couples to buy a house together?

    My husband and I want to buy a house with our friends (an unmarried couple). We are all first time home buyers, and have been pre-qualified by a bank. What type of legal agreement do we need to make amongst ourselves so that we can all own the h...

    Christopher’s Answer

    You absolutely should consult with a lawyer. The law will assume that, absent any agreement, you will own the property as "tenants in common". The problem comes when/if one person wants to sell or get cashed out, etc. You need an agreement on how that will work. If you don't have any agreement, then you will likely end up with a lawsuit. You also need an agreement on sharing costs, including mortgage, insurance, utilities, maintenance, etc. You need a real estate lawyer who is familiar with drafting such agreements.

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  • Our passive aggressive neighbor has become focused on our shared property line and under the cloak of darkness harasses us.

    Our house was built in 1986. We are the 3rd owners. We have been here 4 years. HN strung a yellow string up and down the property the day we moved in. He has done this 3 times. He says our driveway and part of the rock wall are o...

    Christopher’s Answer

    Neighbor disputes can be a real challenge - and expensive. Where possible, it is usually advisable to try to work out amicable solutions/compromises, but that is not always possible or feasible. It sounds like you have a very difficult neighbor and you may need to take some action.

    From the facts you have given, it is hard to say what legal claims or remedies might be available to you. If there is an issue as to the precise location of the boundary line, you may wish to have a survey done to know where it is for certain. As to adverse possession, that is possible, but more facts are needed. Very generally, you need: 10 years (or more and you can stack with prior owners) of open, notorious, exclusive, continuous "hostile" (non-permissive) possession of property. An analysis can be factually and legally complex.

    If you know where the boundary line is with some confidence, you may wish to construct a fence - as tall as local regulations allow, and some fast-growing vegetation (look up Leyland Cypress). This might give you some privacy and some separation.

    You may also have the right/need to seek an anti-harassment order against your neighbor. It sounds like you might qualify for such an order.

    I would suggest that you gather up all your facts and documents and make an appointment with a lawyer familiar with real estate disputes. Paying for a few hours of advice at a minimum is probably going to be worth the expense.

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